TNT is shoring up their lineup of original programming for early 2014 now, and while there are still no details available on the return of “Dallas,” we can at least share with you the return a couple other shows airing on the network.
“Rizzoli & Isles,” the most-watched program on the network these days and also a fan favorite, will return with new episodes on Tuesday, February 25 at 9:00 p.m. Eastern time. This is a pretty difficult launch date to deal with in some ways, as you still have new programming to deal with on most of the major television networks, including another procedural in “NCIS: Los Angeles.” However, the network clearly feels like it has enough fans that the remainder of season 4 will remain strong, and will not be hurt too much by the competition. This premiere will be followed by the first of the final four remaining episodes of “Perception” season 2. Being that both shows have already been renewed for additional seasons, there is no real reason right now to worry about the ratings for either one of them.
From a production standpoint, it is going to be a difficult sort of transition for “Rizzoli & Isles.” The series was rocked with the sudden suicide of series star Lee Thompson Young earlier this year, and filming was halted while the show tried to figure out the best way to handle his passing onscreen. Typically, the only way to really handle this sort of situation is to also kill off the character, but due so in a way that honors the fallen and celebrates the character’s life along with that of the actor. (Cory Monteith probably provides one of the better templates for this awful situation.)
In addition, the show is also having to deal with the departure of showrunner Janet Tamaro, who is looking to develop some other projects for the network. The only good news for the time being is that she will continue to stay on board long enough to see this season through. After that, the network will have the tough decision to try to keep her creative voice intact with someone new behind the scenes.